The Bionic Sound Project

this girl’s journey to sound

Video Games And The CI Saturday, January 13, 2007

As a gamer chick (severely reformed from the marathons of my youth), who never really paid attention to the music and sound effects in the game, my perception has been blown away in the last few days.

I’ve just started playing The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess (gamecube version), that I got from Tim and Janet for Christmas (many thanks!) and I have been blown away by my discoveries.

I can hear the richness and detail in the footsteps of my character, Link. I can hear the sounds from his travels: rustles, whispers, creaks and groans that the world offers me. I could hear the differences in his footsteps, whether they were normal, or fast. I could hear the ticking of the bomb. I could hear the whizz of the sword as it sliced through the air. The sword makes so many different sounds, depending on what kind of motion you make. I can hear enemies creeping up behind me, and turn around to kill them. I hear the animal noises from the animals both in the village and the forest.

It feels like I’m actually there in the world, that I am Link, and hearing it for myself.

I play with both the cochlear implant and the hearing aid, and I can tell the differences in where the sound is being picked up, the quality of it, and the duration of the sound.

People talk about surround sound and high definition sound and the full theater experience. That’s what I felt like I was getting with the CI, even though I just have a regular TV from the mid-90s, nothing fancy.

I’ve played Zelda for the Nintendo NES, Game Boy, Super Nintendo (my favorite), and Gamecube, and this one just blew me away. Maybe it’s just the game that has this extraordinarly rich sound, but the fact remains that what I could hear was different in both ears.

Now I want to go back and play the other games and see if I get the same results with the sound effects.

I felt tears welling up, because it was so beautiful. Sound really does make the whole experience, whether it is a movie, tv show, music, or even a video game.


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